Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

Did ever dragon keep so fair a cave?
Beautiful tyrant! fiend angelical !
Dove-feather'd raven !5 wolvish-ravening lamb!
Despised substance of divinest show!
Just opposite to what thou justly seem'st,
A damned saint, an honourable villain -
O, nature! what hadst thou to do in hell,
When thou did'st bower the spirit of a fiend
In mortal paradise of such sweet flesh ? -
Was ever book, containing such vile matter,
So fairly bound? O, that deceit should dwell
In such a gorgeous palace!
NURSE.

There's no trust,
No faith, no honesty in'men; all perjur'd,
All forsworn, all naught, all dissemblers.

s Dove-feather'd raven! &c.] In old editions

Ravenous dove, feather'd raven, &c. The four following lines not in the first edition, as well as some others which I have omitted. POPE,

Ravenous dove, feather'd raven,

Wolvish-ravening lamb!] This passage Mr. Pope has thrown out of the text, because these two noble hemistichs are inharmonious : but is there no such thing as a crutch for a labouring, halting verse? I'll venture to restore to the poet a line that is in his own mode of thinking, and truly worthy of him. Ravenous was blunderingly coined out of raven and ravening; and if we only throw it out, we gain at once an harmonious verse, and a proper contrast of epithets and images : Dove-feather'd raven! wolvish-ravning lamb!

THEOBALD. The quarto, 1599, and folio, read· Ravenous dove-feather'd raven, wolvish-ravening lamb.

The word ravenous, which was written probably in the manuscript by mistake in the latter part of the line, for ravening, and then struck out, crept from thence to the place where it appears. It was properly rejected by Mr. Theobald. MALONE.

0 A damned saint,]' The quarto, 1599, for damned, has dimme; the first folio-dimne. The reading of the text is found in the undated quarto. MALONE.

Ah, where's my man? give me some aqua vitæ :These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me

old.? Shame come to Romeo ! Jul.

Blister'd be thy tongue, For such a wish! he was not born to shame : Upon his brow shame is asham'd to sit ; 8 For 'tis a throne where honour may be crown'd Sole monarch of the universal earth. 0, what a beast was I to chide at him! NURSE. Will you speak well of him that kill'd

your cousin ? Jul. Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband? Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy When I, thy three-hours wife, have mangled it?'—

name,

7 These griefs, these woes, these sorrows make me old.] So, in our author's Lover's Complaint: “ Not age, but sorrow, over me hath power.”

MALONE. Upon his brow shame is asham'd to sit;] So, in Painter's. Palace of Pleasure, Tom. II. p. 223 : “ Is it possible that under such beautie and rare comelinesse, disloyaltie and treason may have their siedge and lodging ?” The image of shame sitting on the brow, is not in the poem. STEEVENS.

9- what tongue shall smooth thy name,] To smooth, in ancient language, is to stroke, to caress, to fondle. So, in Pericles, Act I. sc. ii: “ Seem'd not to strike, but smooth.

.

STEVENS. "Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,

When I, thy three-hours wife, have mangled it?] So, in the poem already quoted : :

6 Ah cruel murd'ring tongue, murderer of others' fame,
“ How durst thou once attempt to touch the honour of

his name?
“ Whose deadly foes do yield him due and earned praise,
“ For though his freedom be bereft, his honour not

decays...

But, wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin?
That villain cousin would have kill'd my husband:
Back, foolish tears, back to your native spring ;
Your tributary drops belong to woe,
Which you, mistaking, offer up to joy.
My husband lives, that Tybalt would have slain ;
And Tybalt's dead, that would have slain my hus-

band:
All this is comfort; Wherefore weep I then?
Some word there was, worser than Tybalt's death,
That murder'd me: I would forget it fain;
But, O! it presses to my memory,
Like damned guilty deeds to sinners' minds:
Tybalt is dead, and Romeombanished;
That-banished, that one word-banished,

“ Why blam'st thou Romeus for slaying of Tybalt?
« Since he is guiltless quite of all, and Tybalt bears the

fault.
“ Whither shall he, alas! poor banish'd man, now fly?
“ What place of succour shall he seek beneath the starry

sky? “ Since she pursueth him, and him defames by wrong, “ That in distress should be his fort, and only rampire

strong." MALONE. Again, in Painter's Palace of Pleasure: “Where from henceforth shall be his refuge? sith she, which ought to be the only bulwarke and assined repare of his distresse, doth persue and defame him.” HENDERSON. · Back, foolish tears, &c.] So, in The Tempest:

“ I am a fool

“ To weep at what I am glad of.” STEEVENS. « Back," says she, “ to your native source, you foolish tears ! Properly you ought to flow only on melancholy occasions ; but now you erroneously shed your tributary drops for an event [the death of Tybalt and the subsequent escape of my beloved Romeo] which is in fact to me a subject of joy.-Tybalt, if he could, would have slain my husband; but my husband is alive, and has slain Tybalt. This is a source of joy, not of sorrow: wherefore then do I weep?" MALONE.

Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts.* Tybalt's death
Was woe enough, if it had ended there:
Or, if sour woe delights in fellowship,
And needly will be rank'd with other griefs,
Why follow'd not, when she said.Tybalt's dead,
Thy father, or thy mother, nay, or both,
Which modern lamentation might have mov'd ? 5
But, with a rear-ward following Tybalt's death,
Romeo is banished,to speak that word,
Is father, mother, Tybalt, Romeo, Juliet,
All slain, all dead :-Romeo is banished,
There is no end, no limit, measure, bound,

Johnson. Hath put Tuh

Thaning is,

tions than

* Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts.] Hath put Tybalt out of my mind, as if out of being. Johnson.

The true meaning is,-I am more affected by Romeo's banishment than I should be by the death of ten thousand such relations as Tybalt. Ritson.

Hath slain ten thousand Tybalts.] That is, is worse than the loss of ten thousand Tybalts. Dr. Johnson's explanation cannot be right; for the passage itself shews that Tybalt was not out of her mind. M. MASON.

- sour woe delights in fellowship,] Thus the Latin hexameter: (I know not whence it comes)

" Solamen miseris socios habuisse doloris.” STEEVENS. So, in The Rape of Lucrece :

6 And fellowship in woe doth woe assuage,

“ As palmers' chat makes short their pilgrimage.”
Again, in King Lear:

"- the mind much sufferance doth o'er-skip,
“ When grief hath mates, and bearing fellowship."

MALONE. * Which modern lamentation &c.] This line is left out of the later editions, I suppose because the editors did not remember that Shakspeare uses modern for common, or slight: I believe it was in his time confounded in colloquial language with moderate.

JOHNSON. It means only trite, common. So, in As you like it : .

6 Full of wise saws and modern instances.” See Vol. VIII. p. 74, n. 4. STEEVENS. See Vol. VIII. p. 276, n. 5. MALONE.

In that word's death; no words can that woe

sound. Where is my father, and my mother, nurse?

NURSE. Weeping and wailing over Tybalt’s corse: Will you go to them? I will bring you thither. JUL. Wash they his wounds with tears? mine

shall be spent, When theirs are dry, for Romeo's banishment. Take up those cords:-Poor ropes, you are beguil'd, Both you and I; for Romeo is exild : He made you for a highway to my bed; But I, a maid, die maiden-widowed. Come, cords; come, nurse; I'll to my wedding

bed; And death, not Romeo, take my maidenhead!

NURSE. Hie to your chamber: I'll find Romeo To comfort you :- I wot well where he is. Hark ye, your Romeo will be here at night; I'll to him, he is hid at Laurence' cell. JUL. O find him! give this ring to my true

knight, And bid him come to take his last farewell..

[Exeunt.

« AnteriorContinuar »